The world’s largest commercial passenger jet is now flying the longest commercial flight in the world.
On Monday, Qantas Airways began using the Airbus A380 on its route between Sydney and Dallas/Fort Worth Airport. The trip takes aboout 15 hours and 30 minutes and travels close to 8,600 miles.
Qantas has used a Boeing 747-400 since it launched the route in 2011 but by upgrading to the larger A380, the Australian carrier can operate a direct flight to Sydney. Before today, the carrier could fly nonstop from Sydney to DFW but had to stop in Brisbane on the return.
DFW Airport spent $2.8 million to add a jetbridge at Terminal D’s Gates 15 and 16 to accommodate the double-decker plane.
Qantas will operate six flights a week, dropping its Tuesday flight but since the A380 carries 484 passengers, the carrier will increase its seat capacity on the route by 10 percent per week.
The A380 offers 14 individual first-class suites that have electronically adjustable seats with a multi--zone massage function. The seats have been designed to add a dining table to accommodate two passengers traveling together who want to dine as if they’re at a restaurant.
Qantas is part of American Airlines’ Oneworld alliance and also has a partnership with Emirates Airline. Emirates, which operates a nonstop flight between DFW and Dubai, will begin using an A380 on its DFW route on Wednesday.